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A comprehensive database of quality-rated fossil ages for Sahul's Quaternary vertebrates


Rodriguez-Rey, M and Herrando-Perez, S and Brook, BW and Saltre, F and Alroy, J and Beeton, N and Bird, MI and Cooper, A and Gillespie, R and Jacobs, Z and Johnson, CN and Miller, GH and Prideaux, GJ and Roberts, RG and Turney, CSM and Bradshaw, CJA, A comprehensive database of quality-rated fossil ages for Sahul's Quaternary vertebrates, Scientific Data, 3 Article 160053. ISSN 2052-4463 (2016) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.1038/sdata.2016.53


The study of palaeo-chronologies using fossil data provides evidence for past ecological and evolutionary processes, and is therefore useful for predicting patterns and impacts of future environmental change. However, the robustness of inferences made from fossil ages relies heavily on both the quantity and quality of available data. We compiled Quaternary non-human vertebrate fossil ages from Sahul published up to 2013. This, the FosSahul database, includes 9,302 fossil records from 363 deposits, for a total of 478 species within 215 genera, of which 27 are from extinct and extant megafaunal species (2,559 records). We also provide a rating of reliability of individual absolute age based on the dating protocols and association between the dated materials and the fossil remains. Our proposed rating system identified 2,422 records with high-quality ages (i.e., a reduction of 74%). There are many applications of the database, including disentangling the confounding influences of hypothetical extinction drivers, better spatial distribution estimates of species relative to palaeo-climates, and potentially identifying new areas for fossil discovery.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:ecological modelling, palaeoecology, palaeontology, megafaunal extinction, overkill
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Palaeoecology
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Fisheries - wild caught
Objective Field:Fisheries - wild caught not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Brook, BW (Professor Barry Brook)
UTAS Author:Beeton, N (Dr Nicholas Beeton)
UTAS Author:Johnson, CN (Professor Christopher Johnson)
ID Code:112318
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:8
Deposited By:Zoology
Deposited On:2016-11-03
Last Modified:2018-03-17
Downloads:88 View Download Statistics

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